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HomeLocal NewsTwelve North Stars Gymnasts Advance to Nationals

Twelve North Stars Gymnasts Advance to Nationals

MORRIS COUNTY — The North Stars Gymnastics Academy proudly announces 12 National Qualifiers from its USAG National Women’s Development Program, with one of its gymnasts dominating the national field scoring the highest all-around among all Level 10s at the annual U.S. regional meets.

After intense competition, six Level 10 gymnasts and six Level 9s from North Stars Gymnastics qualified at the USAG Region 7 Regionals held at the Nittany Valley Sports Center in State College, Pa. April 11-14. The gymnasts are trained by Head Team Coach Ashley Umberger, Faith Baranowski, Heather Moroz, Shenice Martin, Melissa Jones, and Brielle Benoski.

The USAG Gymnastics Women’s Program is comprised of eight regions throughout the nation, representing all 50 states. Region 7 Gymnastics is the governing body of USAG Gymnastics representing Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia.

The top seven all-around finishers and one alternate from each age group qualify to represent Region 7 nationally. Ten is the top score gymnasts could receive for each event including balance beam, uneven bars, floor exercise, and vault. All-around scores are comprised of all four events with 40 as the highest.

In line with North Stars’ long-standing tradition of excellence, senior Olivia Kelly of Mahwah earned the highest all-around score among all Level 10s from the eight USAG regions with a 39.425The Missouri Women’s Gymnastics Team commit also won the top spot at the New Jersey Level 10 State Championship last month.

“We are proud to have so many of our talented athletes qualify to compete at these prestigious events,” said Ashley Umberger, CEO, part-owner, and head coach of North Stars Gymnastics Academy. “Their hard work, dedication, and perseverance have paid off, earning them an opportunity to compete and showcase their skills on a national level.”

The Level 10s will compete in the USAG Development Program 2024 National Championship May 9-12 at the Volusia County Ocean Center in Daytona Beach, Fla. The top four all-around athletes from each age division will make up the USA Development Program National Team and receive an invitation to participate in a special training camp. The event will be streamed live via a subscription service.

North Stars’ Level 10 National qualifiers include:

  • Olivia Kelly, 17, Mahwah (Bergen County) Class of 2024, Sr. D

North Stars Gymnastics Academy Homeschool Program, senior

University of Missouri Women’s Gymnastics Team commit

AA champion, first place 39.4250

Beam, first place 9.900

Bars, first place 9.850

Floor, first place 9.950

Vault, 9.725

  •  Leah Higgins, 13, Boonton (Morris County) Class of 2029, Jr. A

North Stars Gymnastics Academy Homeschool Program, 7th grade

AA, fifth place 37.4250

Bars, 9.500

Beam, 9.000

Floor, fifth place 9.575

Vault, 9.350

  • Stella Fischer, 14Bridgewater (Somerset County) Class of 2027, Jr. B

North Stars Gymnastics Academy Homeschool Program, freshman

AA, fourth place 36.8250

Bars, fourth place 9.400

Beam, second place 9.625

Floor, 8.725

Vault, 9.075

  • Sophia Rocca, 14Blairstown (Warren County) Class of 2028, Jr. B (All-Star Session/event specialist-beam)

North Stars Gymnastics Academy Homeschool Program, 8th grade

Bars, 9.275

Beam, first place 9.650

  • Kai Mattei, 17Melville,Y. (Suffolk County) Class of 2025, Sr. B

North Stars Gymnastics Academy Homeschool Program, junior

AA, fourth place 37.4500

Bars, 8.975

Beam, first place tie 9.625

Floor, 9.400

Vault, 9.450

  • Alana Walker, 17, West Orange (Essex County) Class of 2024, Sr. D

North Stars Gymnastics Academy Homeschool Program, senior

Stanford Women’s Gymnastics Team commit

AA, second place 38.5250

Bars, 9.375

Beam, fourth place 9.500

Floor, second place 9.850

Vault, second place tie 9.800

In Level, 9, gymnasts will compete individually in their respective age groups and as part of the Region 7 National Team from May 2-5 at the USA Gymnastics Women’s Artistic Level 9 Eastern Championships at the Myrtle Beach Sports Center in South Carolina.

Easterns consists of Regions 5, 6, 7, and 8 — representing 26 states in the Eastern part of the U.S. The other half, Regions 1, 2, 3, and 4, will compete at Westerns the same weekend in Coralville, Idaho.

North Stars’ Level 9 qualifiers for Easterns include:

  • Mira Kalra, 15Basking Ridge (Somerset County) Class of 2026, Sr. 3

Ridge High School, sophomore

AA champion, first place 38.1750

Beam, first place 9.450

Bars, first place 9.500

Floor, first place 9.675

Vault, first place 9.550

  • Olivia Cuff, 14, Denville (Morris County) Class of 2027, Jr. 7 (first alternate)

Morris Knolls High School, Rockaway, N.J., freshman

AA 35.900

Beam, 8.525

Bars, 8.375

Floor, fourth place 9.525

Vault, third place 9.475

  • Ashlyn Cummings, 12, Oak Ridge (Morris County) Class of 2029, Jr. 2

North Stars Gymnastics Academy Homeschool Program, 7th grade

AA, sixth place 36.950

Beam, 8.725

Bars, second place 9.450

Floor, 9.500

Vault, 9.275

  • Lia DiNapoli, 15, Butler (Morris County) Class of 2026, Sr. 3

North Stars Gymnastics Academy Homeschool Program, sophomore

AA, third place 36.5750

Beam, 9.200

Bars, 8.600

Floor, 9.300

Vault, second place tie 9.475

  • Keira Schwarz,14, Basking Ridge (Somerset County) Class of 2028, Jr. 6

William Annin Middle School, Basking Ridge, 8th grade

AA, third place 37.600

Bars, first place 9.400

Beam, 8.950

Floor, first place tie 9.700

Vault, third place 9.550

  • Sh’Nai Thompson,16Dunellen (Middlesex County) Class of 2025, Sr. 5

Dunellen High School, junior

AA, second place 37.6250

Bars, 8.800

Beam, second place 9.425

Floor, second place 9.600

Vault, first place tie 9.800

Frank L. Cahill
Frank L. Cahill
Publisher of Parsippany Focus since 1989 and Morris Focus since 2019, both covering a wide range of events. Mr. Cahill serves as the Executive Board Member of the Parsippany Area Chamber of Commerce, President of Kiwanis Club of Tri-Town and Chairman of Parsippany-Troy Hills Economic Development Advisory Board.
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